The ongoing activities for the coordination of the Spanish participation in the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) project can be found in spain.skatelescope.org/. Those activites started with VIA-SKA project (Feasibility Study of the Spanish Industrial Participation in the SKA), summarized in this page.
Due to the scientific interests of the AMIGA collaboration in the study of galaxy evolution as traced by HI emission, the scientific interest of exploiting the SKA and its pathfinders is clear. In this context, the VIA-SKA project was presented in 2010 to the MICINN National Program for R+D Internationalisation, and in particular to its chapter on Activities Related to International Scientific Research Infrastructures. It was funded with 75.000€, and it was developped between 2011 and 2013 by seven research institutions and eight Universities, led by the AMIGA group, from the IAA-CSIC: Instituto Geográfico Nacional (OAN-IGN), Universidad de Granada (UGR), Universidad de Barcelona (UB), Universidad Carlos III (UCIII), Instituto de Física de Cantabria (IFCA-CSIC)/ Universidad de Cantabria (UC), Universidad de Valencia (UV), Universidad Politécnica de Cartagena (UPC), Centro Tecnológico Avanzado de Energías Renovables (CTAER), Centro de Astrobiología (CAB-INTA-CSIC), Ingeniería de Sistemas para la Defensa de España S.A. (ISDEFE), Institut de Ciencies de l’Espai (ICE-CSIC) and Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC).
VIA-SKA goals could be decomposed in the following objectives:
- Identify technology niches in which both Spanish companies and research centres could contribute to the development of SKA WPs, and what benefits might be derived for the Spanish science and technology system from their participation in the SKA.
- Get in touch with previously identified companies and technology development centres, and discuss in detail opportunities arising from the SKA, and possibly realise their participation in the project.
- Interact with industrial groups from other countries, so that strategic alliances to enable participation in the final definition of the WPs could be made, and developed.
- Promote the creation of national consortium of research centres and companies, and propose their incorporation to the different WP consortia.
Funding was awarded on December 2011, under MICINN grant AIC-A-2011-0658. Since then, VIA-SKA interacted with the Spanish technology and research centres interested in participating in the SKA, and also fostered industry participation in the project.
In order to gather all information related to the SKA for the Spanish community, and register and survey the capabilities of said centres, a capacity map was created, in which all the capabilities of the Spanish companies and research centres which showed their interest to participate in the SKA was summarized. The results of this survey are available on the Spanish mini-site.